Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
The Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, signed in Paris, France, on 20 March 1883, was one of the first intellectual property treaties. It established a Union for the protection of industrial property. The Convention is still in force as of 2014.
According to Articles 2 and 3 of this treaty, juristic and natural persons who are either national of or domiciled in a state party to the Convention shall, as regards the protection of industrial property, enjoy in all the other countries of the Union, the advantages that their respective laws grant to nationals.
In other words, when an applicant files an application for a patent or a trademark in a foreign country member of the Union, the application receives the same treatment as if it came from a national of this foreign country. Furthermore, if the intellectual property right is granted (e.g. if the applicant becomes owners of a patent or of a registered trademark), the owner benefits from the same protection and the same legal remedy against any infringement as if the owner was a national owner of this right.
The "Convention priority right", also called "Paris Convention priority right" or "Union priority right", was also established by Article 4 of this treaty. It provides that an applicant from one contracting State shall be able to use its first filing date (in one of the contracting State) as the effective filing date in another contracting State, provided that the applicant files a subsequent application within 6 months (for industrial designs and trademarks) or 12 months (for patents and utility models) from the first filing.
After a diplomatic conference in Paris in 1880, the Convention was signed in 1883 by 11 countries: Belgium, Brazil, France, Guatemala, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, El Salvador, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland. Guatemala, El Salvador and Serbia denounced and reapplied the convention via accession.
The Treaty was revised at Brussels, Belgium, on 14 December 1900, at Washington, United States, on 2 June 1911, at The Hague, Netherlands, on 6 November 1925, at London, United Kingdom, on 2 June 1934, at Lisbon, Portugal, on 31 October 1958, and at Stockholm, Sweden, on 14 July 1967, and was amended on 28 September 1979.
As of September 2014, the Convention has 176 contracting member countries, which makes it one of the most widely adopted treaties worldwide. Notably, Taiwan and Burma are not parties to the Convention. However, according to Article 27 of its Patent Act, Taiwan recognizes priority claims from contracting members.
Contracting members include: Albania; Algeria; Andorra; Angola; Antigua and Barbuda; Argentina; Armenia; Australia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Bahamas; Bahrain; Bangladesh; Barbados; Belarus; Belgium; Belize; Benin; Bhutan; Bolivia; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Botswana; Brazil; Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cambodia; Cameroon; Canada; Central African Republic; Chad; Chile; China; Colombia; Comoros; Congo; Costa Rica; Croatia; Cuba; Cyprus; Czech Republic; Côte d'Ivoire; Democratic People's Republic of Korea; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Denmark; Djibouti; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Ecuador; Egypt; El Salvador; Equatorial Guinea; Estonia; Finland; France; Gabon; Gambia; Georgia; Germany; Ghana; Greece; Grenada; Guatemala; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Guyana; Haiti; Holy See; Honduras; Hungary; Iceland; India; Indonesia; Iran (Islamic Republic of); Iraq; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Jamaica; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Kuwait; Kyrgyzstan; Laos; Latvia; Lebanon; Lesotho; Liberia; Libya; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia; Madagascar; Malawi; Malaysia; Mali; Malta; Mauritania; Mauritius; Mexico; Moldova; Monaco; Mongolia; Montenegro; Morocco; Mozambique; Namibia; Nepal; Netherlands; New Zealand; Nicaragua; Niger; Nigeria; Norway; Oman; Pakistan; Panama; Papua New Guinea; Paraguay; Peru; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Qatar; Republic of Korea; Romania; Russian Federation; Rwanda; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Samoa; San Marino; Sao Tome and Principe; Saudi Arabia; Senegal; Serbia; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; Singapore; Slovakia; Slovenia; South Africa; Spain; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Suriname; Swaziland; Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Tajikistan; Thailand; Togo; Tonga; Trinidad and Tobago; Tunisia; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Uganda; Ukraine; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; United Republic of Tanzania; United States of America; Uruguay; Uzbekistan; Venezuela; Vietnam; Yemen; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.
Former member states: Austria-Hungary (succeeded by Austria and Hungary); Czechoslovakia; Orange Free State 1899–31 May 1902; Colony of Queensland (1891–1900, after federation acceded to by Australia); Serbia and Montenegro (succeeded by Serbia); Soviet Union (succeeded by the Russian Federation); and Yugoslavia (succeeded by Serbia and Montenegro and then Serbia).
- Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs)
- Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
- Budapest Treaty
- Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO Convention)
- Intellectual property
- Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
- Patent Law Treaty (PLT)
- Priority right
- US provisional patent application
- Substantive Patent Law Treaty (SPLT)
- World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)
- "Contracting Parties to the Paris Convention". WIPO. Retrieved 2012-12-30.
- "Contracting Parties > Paris Convention (Total Contracting Parties : 176)". World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Retrieved 12 September 2014.
- Signed as "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia"
- WIPO web site, WIPO-Administered Treaties. Consulted on 10 August 2007.
- WIPO web site, What is WIPO?. Consulted on 10 August 2007.
- G.H.C. Bodenhausen, Guide to the Application of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property As Revised at Stockholm in 1967, (World Intellectual Property; 1 February 1968) ISBN 92-805-0368-5
- Die Unionspriorität im Patentrecht, Grundfragen des Artikels 4 der Pariser Verbandsübereinkunft, Dr. Reinhard Wieczorek, 1975, Köln, C. Heymanns, ISBN 3-452-17822-6
- Paris Convention at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
- Haberman v Comptroller, a UK court decision that helps to understand the concept of priority.
- Priority under the European Patent Convention Explanation of the priority rules as they apply at the European Patent Office.